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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I bought my LS Manual about a month ago. It had 8 miles on it when I drove it off the lot, so you can bet that my 1.4T needs to be broken in! I'm sitting just below 500 miles as of today, with a total average of 24 mpg. I wanted to cover my findings and see what the community thinks.
1. Conditions
On a daily basis, I'm driving over five short trips (each under ten miles) in my local area. The stoplights are very inefficient; everybody waits at least a minute most of the time. Read: oodles of idling and accelerating. My days start off in the high seventies and peak in the mid nineties, and I only get a shady parking spot half the time. I didn't think this was possible, but my drive yesterday to and from downtown brought my average well above 30 mpg; my family and I avoided the highways and took only took the surface streets the whole way.
Clearly, none of the conditions are explicitly "normal," except for the fact that both (¡Wow!) my refills were with 91 octane fuel; with such a fresh, modern engine, I don't plan on purchasing anything below my area's "premium" for at least several thousands of miles down the road. Same goes for oil; a friend recommended that I import my 5W-30 from Europe.
2. Behavior
a. Car
The transmission is smooth as butter. The tall gear ratios, the forgiving synchros, and that insane torque curve... Ahem, that insane torque plateau! Since buying the car, I haven't ground my gears once. I know that might sound peculiar, so I will ask: have I ground them and simply not realize it? Still, never once has my Cruze made any noise louder than that sweet straight-four.
Anyways, I read that fuel shuts off while cruzing in gear, momentum running the engine, and I found that to suit me perfectly. I instinctively try to stay in gear as much as possible. Again, that torque gives me all the room I could ever want to slack off.
b. Driver
A family member drives an older version of my 1.4T. He recommends I don't push higher than 3200 RPM in traffic, and I rarely break 3000 on the streets. I'm a new manual driver, right? Shifting to 2nd gear is difficult for me, and so I've developed a habit of clutching in somewhat gently to ensure a smooth acceleration, especially with passengers in the car. Once I'm at or above 25 mph, I try to keep my revs around 1500 or so.
3. Tire Pressure
Just this weekend I took a trip downtown to finally get my TPMS fixed. It proved to be quite a goose chase, spanning six hours and two shops.
So I set up an appointment with the dealership to fix up my TPMS, I'd been running with that stupid light on since I drove off the lot. The mechanics cut me through the insane drive-in line, only to tell me that I had to talk to sales because my wheels didn't even have sensors installed in them... Fun fun. My guy in sales, though, was very apologetic, and directed me to his rims hookup. The guys over there got started on the installation right away, and I had working sensors in all four of my tires in an hour.
I only bring this up to highlight my thoughts on the importance of tire pressure. Wait, did I mention the mileage reversal already? ;) Anyways, all the commercial guys tell me to stick close to 35 psi, which is the manufacturer's recommended tire pressure. But talking to other Chevy owners is making me rethink how much air I should be pumping. Most said owners recommend 40 psi for efficiency. Is this true?

Owning this new Cruze makes me very happy. I couldn't ask for anything more, especially at the price I paid. I know that, even now, when my tiny turbo hasn't hit 500 miles, it's pretty early to make any conjectures, but I only want what's best for my engine. Thoughts?
 

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500 miles is not broke in at all, With my Gen 1 cruze my MPG didn't improve until 5000+ miles on the clock. That's besides your 500 miles is a very small sample size to use for any comparison, what is that like 2 tanks of gas?

With that said real stop and go traffic with stops at every block, with a cold engine is going to give you much lower MPG than even EPA testing indicates. Eliminate cold starts by consolidating trips, and don't idle the car unnecessarily. Remember when you idle you get ZERO MPG since your burning gas and not moving.
 

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With the exception of my ECO MT, I have always run my tires at the next 5 PSI above the door placard. I'm currently running my ECO MT at 40 PSI (door placard is 35 PSI) but I have run it as high as 50 PSI cold.
 

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If you grind the gears you will know it. That part in the owner's manual about stopping before shifting in to reverse is mostly true. I can drift a little forward but anything a little faster than a slow drift and you will really hear and feel the grindage.
 

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If you grind the gears you will know it. That part in the owner's manual about stopping before shifting in to reverse is mostly true. I can drift a little forward but anything a little faster than a slow drift and you will really hear and feel the grindage.
Is it not synchroed in the '16? I hit reverse while still rolling often when going to parallel park - never ground.
 

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Sounds like you are doing fine as a new manual trans driver. You will get terrible fuel mileage in town stoplight to stoplight short trips. Always accelerate slowly and short shift (early) to the next gear helps some as well as keeping your tires inflated. Get that beast out on the road ad try it out. I have 10k on mine now. Mine runs better the more miles I put on it.
 

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I got good MPG 5000 in then it went all over the place tune or not. Can't speak on the revs in the 2nd gen since I haven't really pushed one to see where the turbo really starts pulling hard. 3K is about where you start to decline in fuel for us Eco drivers compared to a 2500 or 2800 shift.
 

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Mine pulls good 3K to 6K. I have a high speed merge on my way home from work and accelerating from 45 mph to 78 mph in 3rd gear works great!
:eek:k:
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
This is great! I've always been able to trust EPA ratings for almost any other car I've driven. The fact that I was getting 5 mpg lower than the listed MPG made me classify this as an anomaly, but the overall vibe I'm feeling is that I shouldn't worry about my mileage. The main reason why I wanted to post my findings is to see if I should worry about my numbers; I considered the discrepancy to be quite serious. Of course, like I said, driving in the my downtown area actually pushed up my mileage above 30, what with the wide streets, long blocks, and comfortable speeds. The suburbs really kill. A mile takes over five minutes.

Update: 491 miles on the odometer! Just curious, how long does it usually take to wax a car?
 

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I have a question: Unless you are driving a 2016.5 are you sure you have a 1.4T in an LS. In earlier years the LS was supplied with a 1.8(non turbo)
LS Manual about a month ago. It had 8 miles on it when I drove it off the lot, so you can bet that my 1.4T
Just a question since I know the 1.8 does not do as well as the 1.4T Either engine the car does need breaking in......
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
I have a question: Unless you are driving a 2016.5 are you sure you have a 1.4T in an LS. In earlier years the LS was supplied with a 1.8(non turbo)
Just a question since I know the 1.8 does not do as well as the 1.4T Either engine the car does need breaking in......
Right, I have a year 2016.5 LS with a 1.4. Is that not Generation II?
Also, the turbo spools up around 2000 RPM, from what I can hear. Is that normal? I always thought it was extremely early.
 

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Yes it is Gen II for the Cruze. I have not been all that knowledgeable when it comes to the 2nd generation of the Cruze yet esp since I don't see one in my immediate future.
 

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I drove a round trip of 520 miles today and I just wanted to mention what impresses me the most about the 1.4L engine is how excellent the gas mileage is when you're NOT driving efficiently. I was in Mexico today, and I had cruise set at 85 mph whenever possible (traffic was pretty light so I was doing 85 the majority of the trip), and I frequently made a bunch of 65 mph to 90 mph pulls in 4th. When I was going westbound, I had a pretty strong headwind. I was also in a bit of stop and go traffic when I reached the city.

Despite absolutely NO effort to achieve a decent mpg, I still managed to average 36.5mpg at an average of 63.7mph according to the DIC over 520 miles of hard driving. I haven't filled up yet to do the hand calculation but I imagine it's actually around 35 mpg give or take a few tenths.

That 1.4L engine has an excellent balance of torque and fuel economy. I've had it for 18 months and it still blows my mind sometimes.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Update: I pushed my tires to 42 PSI cold. I'm hitting 28 mpg under the same conditions. I'm only able to kick the DFCO in about twice a day, but my mileage is improving by the week.
 
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